Ford vs. Mazda Reliability: Detailed Comparison Guide

Ford vs Mazda Reliability

Ford and Mazda are popular car brands with a long history of making amazing cars. So, we know how hard it can be to choose a winner between Ford and Mazda’s reliability.

But how do these brands compare? If you choose Ford or Mazda, which one should you go for, considering its reliability?

That’s where our expert editors come in with their hours of research and experience. We did the heavylifting so that you can focus on finding a car that’s perfect for you.

The truth is that Mazda is more reliable than Ford. With Mazda, you are getting cheaper repair and maintenance costs, higher reliability, and dependability ratings. Although Ford slightly beats Mazda with higher safety ratings, Mazda has more cars that you can rely on.

Here's all you need to know about Ford vs. Mazda reliability, with guides on choosing the best brand for you.

Ford vs. Mazda Reliability: A Detailed Comparison

Kinetic Design; SUVs and Trucks
KODO Soul Motion; Sedans and Hatchbacks
Engine and Performance
Higher Safety Ratings
High Safety Ratings
Gas Mileage
Ford cars last up to 200,000 miles, with an average lifespan of 10 -13 years.
Mazda cars last between 200,000 to 250,000 miles, with an average lifespan of 13-17 years.
Repair and Maintenance Cost

Ford vs. Mazda Depreciation Chart

To help you understand the long-term value retention of various models from Ford and Mazda, we've compared their 5-year depreciation and estimated resale values. This side-by-side comparison offers insight into which vehicles might be the better financial investment over time.

Ford Model
Resale Value
Mazda Model
Resale Value
MX-5 Miata

Ford vs. Mazda Reliability: Which Is Better?

It is not a secret that Mazda is not as popular as Ford. This is major because of the limited provision of their cars in the US market. However, when it comes to comparing the reliability of Ford and Mazda, Mazda is better.

According to RepairPal, Mazda has a reliability rating of 4.0/5.0, ranking 5th out of 32 car brands. This is compared to Ford, which ranks 21st out of 32 with a rating of 3.5/5.0.

Mazda also gets higher dependability scores on the 2022 JD Power dependability survey. On JD Power's 2022 Vehicle Dependability Study, Ford ranked 16th overall among all brands, while Mazda ranked 12th. Similarly, on Consumer Reports, Ford ranks 18th in reliability while Mazda became the most reliable car brand of the year.

With Mazda cars, you get cheaper repair and maintenance costs, lesser chances of repairs, and higher durability standards.

Although Ford offers slightly higher safety ratings than Mazda, with more engine power, the difference in gas mileage, design, and specific features depends on which model or trim you choose.

You must understand that Mazda is not heavily invested in trucks, just like Ford.  With both brands offering a standard 3-year/36,000-mile warranty on all new vehicles, as well as a 5-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty, the warranty coverage is similar on both cars.

Let's review the features of Mazda and Ford alongside the different cars in their lineup.

Ford Coverage
Mazda Coverage
New-Vehicle Limited Warranty
3 years/36,000 miles
3 years/36,000 miles
Powertrain Limited Warranty
5 years/60,000 miles
5 years/60,000 miles
Roadside Assistance
3 years/36,000 miles
3 years/36,000 miles
Additional Coverage
Extended Service Plans available for purchase within New Vehicle Limited Warranty period
RX-8 Rotary Engine Core Limited Warranty: 8 years/100,000 miles (specific to RX-8 models)
Yes, transferable to subsequent owners. Transfer fees vary by state.
Yes, warranties are transferable to new owners with a 24-hour roadside assistance program included.

Ford vs. Mazda Reliability: Design

Both Ford and Mazda have a reputation for producing vehicles with striking designs that are both visually appealing and functional.

Ford's design language is characterized by bold lines, sharp angles, a sporty look, and the need to make its cars appear as if they are always in motion.

This is peculiar in Ford trucks and SUVs.  On the other hand, Mazda has a more refined and elegant design language. Mazda adopts the "Kodo" design philosophy, emphasizing sleek lines and a sporty yet sophisticated look.

While both companies have their unique design philosophies, there are some similarities and differences worth noting.

One major difference between Ford's and Mazda's designs is their styling approach. Ford adopts a more traditional, American look and bold lines that deliver a strong presence on the road. Mazda has a more European-inspired design aesthetic, with sleek, flowing lines and a focus on aerodynamics.

Both brands have different approaches to the integration of technology in their designs. Ford is known for incorporating advanced technology into their cars, such as the use of hybrid and electric powertrains, as well as advanced driver assistance systems.

Mazda focuses more on driving dynamics, offering cars that are fun to drive and have a sporty feel. This is without entirely neglecting the user's safety.

Regarding interiors, both Ford and Mazda have high-quality materials and ergonomic designs. However, Ford vehicles have more spacious and comfortable cabins.

The truth is that Ford and Mazda have unique design philosophies and identities. They offer different types of cars to appeal to different types of buyers. Consider comparing both brands according to the model that you wish to buy.

Winner: Both 

Ford vs. Mazda Reliability: Repair and Maintenance Cost

It is cheaper to repair and maintain a Mazda vehicle than a Ford. According to RepairPal, Ford gets a $775 average repair cost, compared to Mazda, which only gets $462. With a Mazda car, you are guaranteed 10% significant damages and a 0.4 chance of visiting the repair shop.

Ford gets up to 0.3 chance of visits and a 15% probability of major damages. The repair and maintenance cost is costlier on Ford, and you will also have more reasons to visit a mechanic with a Ford than you will with a Mazda.

Below, we’ve given you an idea of how much the average annual maintenance costs are for sedans and compact and midsize SUVs.

Ford Model
10-Year Maintenance Cost
Mazda Model
10-Year Maintenance Cost
MX-5 Miata

Winner: Mazda

Ford vs. Mazda Reliability: Engine and Performance

Ford and Mazda offer a wide range of engines and performance options in their vehicles. Ford's lineup includes powerful V6 and V8 engines as well as a range of turbocharged four-cylinder engines.

The Ford Mustang GT, for example, offers a powerful 5.0-liter V8 engine that delivers 480 horsepower. Mazda has a reputation for producing less power but offers vehicles with smooth and responsive handling.

This is all thanks to the Mazda SkyActiv technology. The 2023 Mazda CX-5, with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, delivers 187 horsepower and 186 lb-ft of torque.

Winner: Ford

Ford vs. Mazda Reliability: Safety and Technology

Both Ford and Mazda prioritize safety in their vehicles, and both brands offer a wide range of advanced safety technologies.

Ford has the Co-Pilot 360 system, while Mazda has the i-active sense system.

Both systems provide advanced safety features that include automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, rearview camera, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and many more.

Regarding technology, Ford and Mazda offer a range of features designed to make the driving experience more convenient, comfortable, and connected.

Ford's SYNC3 and Mazda infotainment systems offer voice recognition features, navigation, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto compatibility, voice command, and Bluetooth connectivity.

However, Ford gets the higher hand on safety, with more cars earning the 2022 IIHS Top Safety Pick (+) rating than Mazdas. You don't need to worry more about the safety differences. Ford is ahead of Mazda with just one car.

Winner: Ford

Ford vs. Mazda Reliability: Gas mileage

Regarding gas mileage, Ford and Mazda offer relatively fuel-efficient vehicles. The differences in gas mileage depend on which model from both brands you choose.

Ford's EcoBoost engines, available in many of the brand's vehicles, are designed to deliver good fuel economy while still providing strong performance.

Similarly, Mazda's SkyActiv technology is designed to improve vehicle fuel efficiency.  However, comparing Ford and Mazda cars, we determined that Mazda vehicles are as efficient as Ford cars; it all depends on your choice and preferences.

The Mazda3 Sedan has better gas mileage than Ford Focus, but Ford Escape returns better gas mileage than Mazda CX-5.

Winner: Both


In conclusion, both Ford and Mazda are reliable car makers with good reputations. Ford offers several models, including trucks and SUVs, while Mazda focuses on cars, sedans, and hatchbacks.

Both brands have performed well in terms of customer satisfaction and overall reliability in recent years, with Ford being slightly behind Mazda.

Mazda beats Ford with its better standards of reliability, high dependability scores, and cheaper repair and maintenance cost. Ultimately, the choice between the two will come down to personal preference, the specific model that you choose, budget, and needs.


In our comprehensive comparison between Ford and Mazda, we've unveiled that Mazda typically outshines Ford in reliability, offering lower maintenance costs and higher dependability ratings. Despite Ford's edge in safety ratings and engine power, Mazda presents a more reliable choice with vehicles known for their longevity and cost-effectiveness over time.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What Mazda is the same as a Ford Escape?

The Mazda CX-5 is the close Mazda model almost identical to the Ford Escape. The drive dynamics, gas mileage, and Mazda CX-5 are the Mazda version of the Ford escape.

Does Mazda use Ford engines?

No, Mazda does not use Ford engines, just as Ford doesn't use Mazda engines. Both brands are independent of the resources, engineering principles, and manufacturing techniques of each other.

Are Mazda cars worth buying?

Yes. Mazda cars are worth buying. They are dependable, and you are assured of cheap repair and maintenance costs. In the long run, you will enjoy the fuel efficiency, handling, and performance of Mazda cars, just as their durability.